Redd Pours In 37 as Bucks Top Pistons
Posted Nov 2 2006 12:43AM
AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Nov. 1 (AP) -- The Palace's ``No Fly Zone'' has been lifted.
``Ben's been the Defensive Player of the Year for what, four years? That says it better than anything else,'' Charlie Villanueva said after his 16-point, 12-rebound debut with Milwaukee. ``They are a different team without him.''
Wallace, who used to wear wristbands with ``No Fly Zone'' printed on them, signed a four-year contract with the Chicago Bulls in the offseason for $60 million, leaving a team he helped win an NBA title in 2004 and advance to the previous four Eastern Conference finals.
It took one possession to see how much Detroit missed Wallace. It was frequently obvious over the next 47-plus minutes.
Andrew Bogut scored the opening basket after Milwaukee grabbed rebounds off three missed shots. Bogut scored on an easy layup on the Bucks' next possession and Milwaukee continued to score uncontested baskets near the basket, where Wallace patrolled from 2000-06.
``I'm so tired of you all talking about Ben,'' said Detroit power forward Antonio McDyess, who is not easily irritated. ``He's gone, we're not going to get him back. It's about us trying to come together as a team to find our identity now that he's gone.''
The Pistons will quickly have to figure out how to prevent teams from scoring with ease near the basket after giving up 70 points in the paint against Milwaukee.
``Is that a record? I've never seen that in my life,'' McDyess said.
Actually, the Pistons fell 14 points short of the record for points in the paint allowed, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, but that's not much consolation.
Detroit also hurt its chances by making 22 turnovers.
``That was an embarrassing situation,'' Pistons coach Flip Saunders said.
The Pistons signed Nazr Mohammed a day after losing Wallace in July, and the center had a decent Detroit debut with eight points, 12 rebounds and a block before fouling out.
``My days of worrying about numbers are long gone,'' said Mohammed, starting his ninth season.
Richard Hamilton and Chauncey Billups each scored 25 points and Tayshaun Prince added 16 for the Pistons, who lost All-Star forward Rasheed Wallace midway through the third quarter. Wallace was ejected for a second technical for bickering with officials, who taught him an early lesson that the NBA is serious about its new point of emphasis.
Wallace, who was scoreless on 0-for-3 shooting and had three rebounds, was outplayed by Villanueva and Bogut before being tossed. Bogut scored 16 points and grabbed nine rebounds, a strong showing after the No. 1 pick from the 2005 NBA draft missed the preseason with a left leg injury.
The Bucks traded point guard T.J. Ford to Toronto for Villanueva because they wanted the young power forward and were confident in Mo Williams, who had 14 points, four assists and no turnovers against the Pistons.
The Bucks lost in the first round last year in the playoffs against top-seeded Detroit, which won a franchise-record 64 games.
Milwaukee was in control from start to finish in a game it never trailed. The Bucks led by 12 points in both the first and second quarters, built a 13-point cushion in the third before going ahead by 14 in the fourth and coasting in the final minutes.
``When we come into The Palace, where we were something like 0-5 last year, and play like this,'' Milwaukee coach Terry Stotts said, ``it is going to build a lot of confidence for a young team.''
Notes: Like Wallace, Patterson was called for a technical for bickering with officials. ``On me?'' Patterson asked. ``Yes, on you!'' official Ken Mauer replied. ... Miami was the last team to match the NBA record for points in the paint, a stat that has been kept since the 1996-97 season, scoring 84 in a game last season against Seattle. ... Reserve guard Flip Murray, signed along with Mohammed as a free agent, had 10 points in his Detroit debut.
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